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Everything you need to know about Bourbon whiskey

  10/19/2021 at 18:12 pm

Some Fun Facts About Bourbon Whiskey

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“Brown spirits” are confusing. Aren’t they? The differences might be a little too overwhelming for someone who only drinks occasionally.

All the same, it’s a sure thing that only whiskey connoisseurs would know what is the major difference between Scotch, Tennessee, and bourbon (all are whiskeys).

Nevertheless, all whiskeys differ from each other in terms of taste, quality, origin, and the way they are being distilled. As far as Bourbon is concerned, you must know it’s one of the most cherished whiskeys out there.

Bourbon whiskey is the most popular American whiskey that is made essentially with the mash of 51% corn. Not only does it come in various flavors ranging from mint to honeysuckle, but its price ranges from 30 bucks to 15,000 bucks.

And that’s not all! Below are some more interesting fun facts about Bourbon and why it is loved by whiskey lovers.

What is Bourbon?


what is bourbon

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The most common belief about bourbon tells us that: “all bourbon is whiskey but not all whiskey is bourbon.” This is true and is the simplest fact about bourbon whiskey.

Every whiskey is formulated in the same manner: the fermented grain mash is distilled and then goes through the process of aging for some time which depends on various factors.

Bourbon works principally the same. However, the grain mash liquor strictly contains 51% corn and this spirit is aged in American white-oak casks for a minimum of two years. To be a straight bourbon whiskey, the aging years should be more than 2 years.

Some things to note about Bourbon Whiskey:


  • The fermented grain mash must be 51% corn or more
  • It must be aged in a charred white oak barrel. The used barrel can’t be reused for aging bourbon again and again.
  • According to law, bourbon is a strictly American Native spirit that must be produced only in America. Perhaps, this is the reason everyone believes that real bourbon is made just in Kentucky. Nonetheless, you can make bourbon in other states of America as well. Only Tennessee whiskey is restricted to produce in Tennessee. However, home distillation is illegal.
  • The distilling proof for bourbon is not greater than 160.
  • When stored in a new charred white oak barrel, the liquor should be not more than 125 proof.
  • The bottled formula contains not less than 80 proof.
  • In Kentucky, there are more barrels of bourbon than people. More than 7.5 million barrels of bourbon are now aging in warehouses in Kentucky.
  • Whereas bottled-in-bond bourbon whiskey must be distilled for a minimum of 4 years with 100proof.
  • All Tennessee bourbon whiskey could be a bourbon.


What is the difference between Bourbon and other “brown spirits”?


difference between Bourbon and other brown spirits

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Scotch, Tennessee, and bourbon are all brown spirits but every brown spirit isn't a bourbon or a Scotch. Here is the difference between bourbon and whiskey for your better understanding of brown spirits.


Scotch whiskey is distilled from water and malted barley and conforms to the Scotch Whiskey Order of 1990. Only yeast is used for fermentation and the alcoholic strength must not be more than 94.8% by volume. There aren't any additive substances used except caramel coloring. The aging period is not less than 3 years.

Tennessee whiskey is a straight bourbon whiskey that is produced only in Tennessee. By law, the spirit that conforms to the North American Free Trade Agreement and also is bound to expose to a column of charcoal chips before maturation.

For a consumer, Scotch whiskey has a character of smokey flavor, bourbon is sweeter, and Tennessee is somehow mellower than bourbon and bears a charcoal taste

Is bourbon better than other brown spirits?

Frankly speaking, there isn't such a thing as better or best when speaking of premium quality whiskeys. It's all a matter of your personal liking and disliking towards a certain kind of whiskey. Everyone has his notion and experience that might be different from others. 

Some whiskies give the best flavoring and booze when you mix them in a cocktail whereas some are meant to be enjoyed straight as a dinner-after drink. 

For some, the more expensive a bottle is, the more premium the whiskey would be. That being said, some bourbons cost 700 bucks per bottle while some bourbons cost under $50 and do offer a delicious taste for your palate.

Tennessee vs bourbon? Which is better is a question that intrigues every whiskey connoisseur once in his life. Again, there is no hard and fast rule which is better since all Tennessee whiskey is bourbon but not every bourbon is Tennessee. So watch out first and ask an expert bartender to help you through your ride on whiskey. He is the only one who can get you the best bourbon whiskey. 

In my honest opinion, don't buy a bottle of bourbon that you haven't tried before. You could seek guidance from a bartender to get a more exotic bourbon for yourself.

Types of Bourbon whiskey


types of Bourbon whiskey

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Milam & Greene, Woodford Reserve, Buffalo Trace, Jim Beam, Four Roses, and Willet are some popular distilleries that you might know if you have just started out your whiskey journey.

Milam and Greene Triple Cask Bourbon

You would be blown away once you sipped this bourbon made in Texas. Combining the strength of Tennessee, a single bottle of this bourbon is available at $43.

Old Forester Single Barrel

Old is gold. Costing $50, this bourbon offers you everything you desire from a premium quality whiskey. Swooning over your palate, this whiskey has 115 proof alcohol content.

Buffalo Trace

Produced in Kentucky, this whiskey harmonizes well with fancy cocktail recipes. Also, an inexpensive bourbon with a delicious taste.

Jim Beam

Another master distillery that produced cost-effective bourbon to mix well with cocktail drinks. The alcohol content is 40%.


This is another Kentucky-based family-owned distillery that produced bourbon whiskies with fantastic and diverse fruity tastes.

Four Roses

Back up with an award-winning title, Four Roses produced well-balanced and rich bourbon whiskeys in several flavors ranging from cinnamon to mint, and from vanilla to nutmeg. This bourbon is economical, too.


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It's difficult to convey tastes to someone who is unfamiliar with whiskey. If you're of legal drinking age, find a reputable bar with a large selection of bourbons and work with a knowledgeable bartender to sample a variety of them.

Once you get addicted to it, you can try out a variety of Bourbon whiskey drinks getting the attention and praise of whiskey lovers. A perfect bourbon whiskey cocktail can make your day.

By Brandon